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Critique my food itinerary

We are spending 2 nights in NYC for our 10th anniversary at the end of Sept. Since we will be leaving our 3 year old behind - we are looking forward to eating out. I have created a food itinerary. I tried to balance it $$$wise (you'll note that our more expensive restaurants are being visited for lunch)

We enjoy a variety when it comes to food - my husband wants to try indian. I wanted to to EMP and JG.

The restaurants are not firm yet but I did base them on what neighbourhoods we would be in at those times. For example - the first night we have a concert at RCMH so I needed something close to that.

Sunday -
Breakfast - Sabareth's
Lunch - Serendipity
Supper - Victor's Cafe

Monday -
Breakfast - ?
(wil do Greemarket farmer's market for morning)
Lunch _ Eleven Madison Park (should be reopened by then with new more $$$ menu)
Supper - Tamarind

Tuesday -
Breakfast - ?
then to museum of Nat his
Late Lunch - Jean Georges

Head to airport

Is there anyhting here that seems like a bad idea?


Also - do people reserve for Breakfasts?

Thanks - we are excited ! I am nearing the 30 day mark so I need to decide so that I can make my ressies.

Eleven Madison Park
11 Madison Ave., New York, NY 10010

Jean Georges
1 Central Park W, New York, NY 10023

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  1. Sunday is terrible - all 3.

    Sunday -
    Breakfast - Sabareth's
    Lunch - Serendipity
    Supper - Victor's Cafe

    1 Reply
    1. re: chow_gal

      serendiptity is cute. but the food is less than stellar. less than good, even.

    2. Some places take reservations for breakfast but a lot do not. Most of the most popular spots don't.

      Best Breakfasts and Brunches in Manhattan, 2010

      I'd do Clinton St Baking Co. or Locanda Verde for a weekday breakfast, maybe Prune or Minetta Tavern on the weekend, and I have been hearing great things about Maialino's breakfast/brunch, too.

      Minetta Tavern
      113 MacDougal St, New York, NY 10012

      Locanda Verde
      377 Greenwich St, New York, NY 10013

      2 Lexington Avenue, New York, NY 10010

      1. locanda verde and maialino

        1. Sarabeth's - skip. There aren't a lot of brunch options around there (that are any good) admittedly, but you can do better than SB's for sure. Maybe the Central Park Boathouse? Beautiful view, food is decent enough.

          Prune is one of the best brunches in town, no question - but that said, it's nowhere near the area you'll be.

          Serendipity = awful tourist trap. Don't fall for it.

          If you're going to be in that area, and you like Italian, two blocks South you've got both Mia Dona and Felidia - both are reasonably priced, at Mia Dona nothing's over $20, and at Felidia there's a $29.50 lunch special for three courses.

          Victor's Cafe isn't "bad" - but it's decidedly overpriced. I'd eat there if every plate was $10 less, and I happened to be in the neighborhood and had a sudden hankering for Latin food. Actually, wait - no - I still wouldn't. I'd go to Toloache, a "Haute Mexican" bistro two blocks South.

          In that neighborhood you've also got Insieme (Italian) and, of course, Le Bernardin if you decide you want to break the bank.

          Monday looks good. I'm more about Tabla than Tamarind, personally, but it's not like you'll have a bad meal at either.

          For breakfast before the Natural History Museum, I'm not sure who's open that early on weekdays. There's an Alice's Tea Cup nearby, they're cute and not very expensive. Otherwise probably mostly chains and generic diners up there.

          251 West 50th Street, New York, NY 10019

          243 E 58th St, New York, NY 10022

          777 Seventh Avenue, New York, NY 10019

          Le Bernardin
          155 W. 51st St., New York, NY 10019

          Alice's Tea Cup
          102 W 73rd St, New York, NY 10023

          Mia Dona
          206 East 58th Street, New York, NY 10022

          Central Park Boathouse
          Central Park East Drive E 72nd St, New York, NY 10021

          2 Replies
          1. re: sgordon

            Sarabeth's on the UWS is open pretty early as is Barney Greengrass.

            Barney Greengrass
            541 Amsterdam Avenue at 86th Street
            New York, NY 10024
            Tuesdays through Sunday 8am to 6pm.
            Restaurant opens at 8:30am.

            Barney Greengrass
            541 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10024

            1. re: kathryn

              Oh, man - how could I forget Barney G? Slapping my head...

          2. If you're going to the Farmer's Market on Union Square on Monday, go to breakfast at one of the places that's walkable from there. I would recommend Cafe Mogador, which is on St. Marks between 1st and A (so not close to Union Square but definitely walkable), and has excellent breakfast every day. My preference is for the Moroccan Eggs, but I also like the Middle Eastern and Haloumi Eggs, and there are various other items. You'll have no problem just walking in on a Monday morning. The restaurant opens at 9 AM.

            1. Thanks for all the suggestions - especially breakfasts as I have little ideas there.

              I know Serendipity is a trap - i Just liked the movie...

              I am suprised about Victor's as I thought the menu looked good.

              My first b-fast - the one that was going to be Sabareth's - I am looking for something close to Ritz or Plaza but not too $$$.

              9 Replies
              1. re: lorajo

                Define what "not too $$$" means to you and also what "close" means to you.

                1. re: Pan

                  Easy walking distance. that is the area we will be wandering that morning. I was hoping to check out the lobbies of these hotels while I wait for the stores to open.

                  I would be happy with a deli style place for breakfast. Like at least under $30 for breakfast for both of us.

                    1. re: daffyduck

                      86th street - how long a walk would that be to 60th....I am guessing probably too far.

                      I will probably just "wing" that breakfast as I don't need anything fancy. Breakfast isn't my favorite meal of the day so I will try to save there....

                      Thank you

                      1. re: lorajo

                        20 blocks is a mile. 3-4 miles an hour is what people walk (4 for visitors, 4+ for a NYer at full bore)

                        1. re: lorajo

                          i think about 20 mins. I'd say it takes a little less than a min to walk each street. You can take a scenic walk by the central park?

                          1. re: daffyduck

                            30 seconds if you walk fast. a minute if you;re really strolling.

                      2. re: lorajo

                        Petrossian's at 58th and 7th. I was impressed with both their plain croissant and their cannele.

                        182 W 58th St, New York, NY 10019

                        1. re: daveena

                          Good thought. I liked their pistachio croissant (which might have had another ingredient or two in it).

                  1. I thought I would provide an update on our two nights in NYC. Thank you all for your recs. We are tourists from Canada so some of our choices were the choices of tourists and not foodies. That said, we really enjoyed all our meals.

                    We were excited to be in the city and had lots to look at. So I had a NYC street vendor hot dog and my husband a a patty from the same vendor. It was good. We were having an early supper that night so we weren't looking for much.

                    Supper - we stuck with Victor's Cafe. I was looking for something close to Radio City Music Hall that wouldn't take too long on a Sunday. (Going to convert at 7PM) The menu appealed to me and it fit my needs.
                    I wad happy with the fare. I would agree that it it is a little touristy but we were satisfied. I had the pig and it was good. My husband had the beef. For apps, the avocado soup was good, and the salad was more average. The mojito (melon flavored) was great. The sangria was ok but mojitos are their drink.

                    Bfast - we got caught in the rain (monday and tuesday we dealt with a lot of rain) and stepped into a diner right next to union square. We had been planning on exploring greenmarket and seeing if there was neat food to try from the vendors. The rain sort of caboshed that.
                    Lunch - Balthazar. It was kind of neat to be inside there. That said, I probably wouldn't go back. My husband had the roasted veg. salad and onion soup. Soup was good, he didn't finish the salad so I don't think he loved it.

                    I had the Balthazar salad and a lobster bisque that they had on that day. It was very good but I think I prefer a more relaxed ambience. (So crowded and tables so close together)

                    We went to Little Italy at suppertime. I know no one enjoys the food there either but we wanted to check out the neighbourhood., ( We had planned to see it in the afternoon after union square and soho but the rain changed our plans and we had spend the afternoon in macy's instead!)
                    So we ate at Il Cortile. It definitely wasn't crowded. We sat in the front window, (trying to make the place look busier...) We had the meatball for a an app. I had the shrimp scampi and my husband had chicken parmesan. They were good - I prefered my husband's chicken. We bought deserts at Ferrara (I think that's what it was called) which I thought were excellent. We got them to go and ate them at the hotel in bed watching tv. lovely.

                    Last day - bfast Zabars - It was funny seeing that nova scotia salmon is such a big thing there. We are from new brunswick (next to nova scotia) so that is the salmon we always eat. The bagel was good. The orange juice was even better. I mostly enjoyed going around their market and wishing I could bring the food on the plane with me. I did bring home so chimichurry sauce that I cooked with last night. Yum!

                    Lunch - for our last lunch - we ate at Jean Georges. I would give it the full 5 stars. The amuse bouches were interesting. Wine - I had a rose and he had some red. I forget what kinds. First couse - I had the goat cheese gnocchi (awesome) and husband had tuna ribbon. IT was very good as well He had the steak and I had the snapper. Both good but I really loved my snapper. And I had the chocolate desert (with a fantastic Riesling) and he had the market desert. The tomato 'ice cream" was neat to try.

                    I was a little nervous that it would be snootty and I wouldn't feel comfortable. It wasn't like that at all. Our waitress was excellent and professional.
                    I don't know if this is considered the worst seat in the house but we were sitting in a little booth against the wall facing the restaurant. It was kind of neat sitting there - it was private yet you had a good view of how the restaurant if a well oiled machine ....

                    Then off to the airport.

                    Thanks chowhounds - I enjoyed reading on these boards before my trip to help me know where to eat!

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: lorajo

                      Was the tomato ice cream at Jean Georges a savory accompaniment to a dish, or was it a dessert? I could definitely imagine a good sweet ice cream being made with very sweet heirloom tomatoes. I once had a tomato and watermelon salad at Joe's in Venice, California that had slices of dark heirloom tomatoes that tasted more like peaches or some other wonderful, juicy sweet fruit than ordinary tomatoes.

                      1. re: Pan

                        It was part of of his desert. Served in a little smooth cone. I liked it, but was glad I got the chocolate since I love chocolate.

                      2. re: lorajo

                        lorajo: "We went to Little Italy at suppertime. I know no one enjoys the food there either but we wanted to check out the neighbourhood., ( We had planned to see it in the afternoon after union square and soho but the rain changed our plans and we had spend the afternoon in macy's instead!)
                        So we ate at Il Cortile. It definitely wasn't crowded. We sat in the front window, (trying to make the place look busier...) We had the meatball for a an app. I had the shrimp scampi and my husband had chicken parmesan. They were good - I prefered my husband's chicken."

                        I used to eat at Il Cortile (which we all pronounced "EEL CorTEEL") nearly every friday night during the '70s. It was a really good place thenadays, when Little Italy was still kind of Italian. I had no idea it was still around (I don't live in NY anymore). I lived in the Village, and Il Cortile was the perfect place to have dinner before hitting the bars in Soho (not the shopping mall it has since become).

                        Il Cortile
                        125 Mulberry St, New York, NY 10013